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Fourth edition of Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob commences
at Jorasanko Thakur Bari

Kolkata, 16th November 2018: Oxford Bookstore today opened the fourth edition of Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob at Jorasankho Thakurbari, the birthplace of Gurudev Tagore, inaugurated by eminent writers Shankha Ghosh, Samaresh Mazumdar and Mazharul Islam from Bangladesh.

India’s first festival debuting in 2015 exclusively dedicated to Bangla literature, ABSU is presented in association with Patra Bharati Group and supported by Rabindra Bharati University. The opening ceremony of its fourth edition held in the courtyard of Jorasanko Thakurbari, was graced by Prof Sabyasachi Basu Ray Chaudhury, Vice Chancellor, Rabindra Bharati University; Tridib Kumar Chattopadhyay, MD Patra Bharati Group of Publications and Swagat Sengupta, Director Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob and CEO Oxford Bookstores. The inauguration was followed by the launch of Tagore’s ‘Golpo Guchcho O Shob’ by Shanka Ghosh with a keynote address on ‘The Future of Bangla Literature’ by Mazharul Islam.

Light and Sound Show in the stunning background of Rabindra Bharti Museum was part of the opening ceremony that included the unveiling of book cover of ‘Tero Nadir Pare’ by Sirsho Bandhopadhyay and a discussion on Terrorism in Bangla Literature titled Sahitye Santrash between Sirsho Bandhopadhyay, Bitanu Chatterjee, Debotosh Das, Tridib Kumar Chattopadhyay and Himabanta Bandhopadhyay.

Speaking to reporters during the Utsob, Swagat Sengupta, CEO Oxford Bookstores & ABSU Director said, “Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob is in its 4th year and continues to support, promote & strengthen Bangla Language. This year our ever increasing audience will feel special, as the Utsob will be held at the birth place of Nobel Laureate Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore- Jorasanko Thakubari. We got an overwhelming response from our followers, when we announced this on the social media. ABSU 2018 will be our best offering so far, with 20 specially curated sessions which range from heritage, partition, limericks, sports, music, cinema and audio of Bangla language in this pristine heritage venue invaluable to Bangla literary legacy and we hope people will (re)visit, appreciate and enjoy this Utsob we have put together. Riding on the soaring popularity of ABSU in the last three years, Oxford Bookstore Park Street has hosted ABSU events highlighting the various facets of Bengal and its literature for the last year which have attracted packed audience. With consistent support from Patra Bharati, a valued association which is now in its 4th year, to accomplish this objective of expanding the reach of Bangla Literature through this pioneering initiative is truly inspiring”
Present at the occasion Mr. Tridib Kumar Chattopadhyay, Managing Director, Patra Bharati Group of Publications said, “In 2015, a new era began with the inception of Apeejay Bangla Sahityo Utsob, conducted jointly by Oxford Bookstore and Patra Bharati Group of Publications. We are delighted to inform all of our friends of media that this joint venture is now become a fixed destination for all the Bangla book lovers of our city. The enormous popularity of this Sahityo Utsob, has encouraged us to go to Jorasanko Thakurbari and have the courtyard as the festival venue. Our plethora of sessions with extremely interesting subject lines, is very exciting and thought provoking and I am sure it will interest all lovers of Bangla literature and language”.
Partnering with the Utsob for the first time, Prof Sabyasachi Basu Ray Chaudhury, Vice Chancellor, Rabindra Bharati University, “Rabindranath Tagore was the architect of modern Bengali literature and language. We are very happy that this year’s Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsav will be taking place at his abode at Jorasanko, where the Tagore, the first Asian recipient of Nobel Prize for Literature was born and also breathed his last. We hope that, the younger generations will be eager to muster the Bangla language and be interested more in Bengali literature through this endeavour.”
ABSU 2018 speakers include authors and writers Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay, Sanjib Chattopadhyay, Shankha Ghosh, Samaresh Majumdar, Mazharul Islam, Soikat Mukhopadhyay, Anish Deb, Subodh Sarkar, Sirsho Bandhopadhyay, Debatosh Das, Himadrikishore Dasgupta, Pracheto Gupta and Srijato Bandopadhyay ; Historians, professors and researchers Debasis Mukhopadhyay, Somen Sengupta, Abhijit Gupta, Chinmoy Guha, Srabani Gupta, Sougata Chakraborty, Syed Tanveer Nasreen, Alokprasad Chattopadhyay; Entrepreneur Satyam RoyChowdhury; Media personalities Abhik Sarkar, Bitanu Chatterjee, Santanu Chakraborty, Avik Mukherjee, Chumki Chattopadhyay and publisher Esha Chatterjee; celebrated theatre personalities Arindam Ganguly and Kheyali Dastidar; popular musicians Usha Uthup, Anupam Roy, Anindya Chattopadhyay, Upal Sengupta and Parama Dasgupta; and prominent Film Directors Arindam Sil, Sudeshna Roy, and Kaushik Ganguly.
Coming up tomorrow Saturday 17th November:
Starts at 11 AM with Instrumental Music with Prof. Biswajit Bhattacharya on Tabla Lahara, Hiranmay Mitra on Harmonium, Pandit Debasish Bhattacharya on Sarod, and Pandit Parimal Chakraborty on the Tabla, from Rabindra Bharati University.

Followed by Hashyo Rosher Jibon Kahini (Life story of Humour) presented in association with Purono Kolkatar Golpo for those who love to read humour; Sahitya ki Khelar Jinish? (Sports in Literature) for sports loving Bengalis; Puratoni Bangla Gaan O Tappa (Yesteryears Bangla Music) presented in association with Rabindra Bharati University; Kothae Shure Maatir Gaane (Words, Tunes, and Folk Music) for music lovers. Further illuminating discussions like Counter, Na Computer, Pathok Kothae Jaye Bar Bar? (Counter or Computer – Where will the reader go?), Porimori Kano Pori? (What we get from books by reading them), Shilaidoho, na Jorasanko? Rabithakur Kothae Thako? (Shilaidoho or Jorasanko? Where does Robithakur belong?); and Hare Hare Bujhilam, Sahitya Niye Boshilam! (Cinema cannot survive without literature) will keep audience hooked throughout the day.
Coming up on Sunday 18th November:
Begins at 11 AM with the much-loved Bangla Sahitya Quiz conducted by Quiz Master Saurav Ranjan Datta. The winners of the online micro-stories and micro poems competition Kotha Kom, Kaaj Beshi (Less Talk, More Work) and Pick Chaar Kotha which has been underway for the last one month will be declared.

Followed by an innovative format of on-the-spot creative writing Tokkhuni Takkhunik (Then and there) in association with Kobita Club , Shimante Chariye: Cinema O Sahitya (Beyond Borders: Cinema and Litrature); Bangla Bhasar Sarani: Alo na Andhokaar! (The path of Bengali Language: Alighted or in Darkness!) discussions. ABSU is introducing a unique discussion on how translation unites Literature beyond languages Duniyar Sahitya Ak Hou (How translation in literature is connecting the world literature together). Sotyer Modheo Sahitya (Reality is always hidden somewhere in literature) which focusses on how literature resides in everyday realities of life; London Kinba Mirike/ Golpo Ache Gaaner Lyric e (A story is hidden in the lyrics of the song), a discussion on Literature hidden in lyrics of songs; Porbo Na sunbo? Jor kise Gunbo? (Listening or reading books – which one do you prefer?), focusing on books v/s audio- books dichotomy will be discussions ABSU brings to Kolkata on its closing day.

About the book Golpo Guchcho O Shob:
Bengali life and literature is incomplete without him, and it will perhaps remain so in the next five centuries as well. Geetabitan still is regarded as every Bengali man’s hallowed possession. Rabindranath Tagore continues to overwhelm discerning Bengali readers with his vast array of thoughts and philosophies that has remained contemporary even after so many years. Visual entertainment mediums like cinema and TV continues to promote him and his oeuvre of short stories. But they are not limited to Golpoguchho only. Apart from this revered text, this collection also includes Lipika, Golpo Sholpo, and Shey—his complete body of stories.

Our Partners:
Patra Bharati is associate partner for ABSU. ABSU 2018 is supported by Rabindra Bharati University, Keo Karpin, Future Publishers, 24 Ghanta and Amazon Westland; 94.3 Radio One is ABSU Radio Partner; Purono Kolkatar Golpo and Kobita Club are ABSU session partners; Koko Chino and Ekdalia Road Social are ABSU Food Partners; Cha Bar and Typhoo are ABSU Refreshment Partners; and Studio 15 is ABSU’s Visual Documentation Partner.

About Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob (ABSU):
Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsob (ABSU), India’s first Bangla Literary Festival (ie Utsob in Bangla) created by the nearly 100 year old Oxford Bookstores in 2015, honours the rich literary tradition of the Bangla language. The objective of ABSU, a prized initiative of Oxford Bookstores, is to make Bangla literature increasingly visible and accessible, build an audience for Bangla books and create a culture of readership and familiarization with Bangla language among the youth. An interactive platform bringing together voices of contemporary Bangla Literature from the national and international stage, ABSU showcases all aspects of Bangla literature and literary expression and their impact on various art forms. ABSU is committed to the journey of Bangla Literature which is both exciting and exhilarating and have brought eminent personalities to grace the Festival in the last three years. They include renowned authors like Shirshendu Mukherjee, Nabaneeta Dev Sen, Samaresh Majumdar, Sankha Ghosh, Pracheta Gupta, Ranjan Bandhopadhyay, Sanjib Chattopadhaya, Saikat Mukhopadhyay, Anindo Chattopadhaya, Nrisingha Prasad Bhaduri, Srijato, Binod Ghoshal, Himadrikishor Dasgupta, Anish Deb, Krishnendu Mukherjee and Subodh Sarkar; film Directors like Suman Mukhopadhyay, Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury and Arindam Sil; Bengali musicians Nachiketa, Surojit Chatterjee and Swagatalaksmi Dasgupta; Actors Sabyasachi Chakraborty and Barun Chandra. Utsob has also attracted prominent literary personalities from Bangladesh like Salina Hussain and Imdadul Haq Milon.

About Patra Bharati
Patra Bharati started its journey back in the year 1968, with the very reputed juvenile magazine, Kishore Bharati. In 1981 Patra Bharati entered the world of book publishing. It mainly concentrated on Children and Juvenile Literature. With the start of a millennium, Patra Bharati stepped up and started publishing of all Literature across all genres and age groups. The lines of restrictions were removed and a new age publication house that focused on varied forms of Literature was born. Patra Bharati has to its credit Novels, Essays, Compilations, Graphic Novels, Comics, Stories, Non Fiction, Prose and so on. Many titles have received Awards and Accolades and are best sellers in today’s time. Very recently Patra Bharati has also entered into English Publication, under the name BEE Books which has started gaining popularity with some of its titles.

About Oxford Bookstores:
Established in 1919, Oxford Bookstore is the best equipped ‘base-camp’ for journeys of the mind offering its customers the widest range of outstanding titles and consistently courteous and informed service for close to a century. Today, with stores in major metros, India’s first of its kind tea boutique, Cha Bar, India’s only literary festival created by a bookstore, Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival, Oxford Bookstore offers booklovers access to the very best in publishing enhanced by a variety of events which salute books, visual & performing arts and celebrate the word. Oxford Bookstore measures its success by the smiles on millions of happy customers that the brand has served over the last nearly 100 years. There are a few treats as sumptuous as a visit to Oxford Bookstore in India. Each time you walk into our iconic store in Kolkata where the brand started in 1919, its charm leaves you wanting for more. Our fleet of happy to help expert booksellers and informed hosts work day and night to bring to customers world class reading experience be it through our books or our fine teas and live by the brand’s motto – Much more than a bookstore – at every Bookstore.

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